Man's physical universe

xanabras

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CHEMISTRY AND THE CONTROL OF DISEASE 771

Iodoform, CHI3, itself is practically insoluble and probably inactive

toward bacteria, but it reacts with diseased tissue and bacteria, slowly

evolving iodine, thus providing a mild antiseptic action for open

wounds. An objectionable feature of iodoform is its persistent odor; and

what is more important, it may cause poisoning or irritant phenomena.

Hydroxyl Derivatives of Benzene Are Antiseptics.

It will be pointed out in the next Section that derivatives of benzene

act as antipyretics and analgesics. Many derivatives of benzene also

possess antiseptic properties. The (OH) radical is the most active

group in so far as antiseptic properties are concerned. The antiseptic

properties of benzene derivatives are increased with an increase in the

number of (OH) radicals substituted. Incidentally, the toxicity of

these compounds is likewise increased with an increase in the number

of (OH) radicals substituted.

The substitution of (CH3) for a H in phenol increases its antiseptic

properties. Such a mixture is also known as "cresylic acid." Wood

creosote is a mixture of phenol, cresol, and similar compounds. The

introduction of the (CHs) radical not only increases the antiseptic

properties but also diminishes the toxicity.

Phenol acts as a local anaesthetic, but it "burns" the skin. Taken

Phenol has no place in the household.

H OH OH

internally, phenol acts as an antipyretic and analgesic, but it is violently

toxic to the body.

H—

H—

H—

H—


C

C

H

benzol

(benzene)

OH

I

C

/ \

C—

II

C—

C-OH

C—OH

\ / C

I

H

pyrogallol

H—

H—

H—

H—

C—

II

C—

^ / c

H

phenol

(carbolic acid)

OH

I

C

/ \

C—

C—

% / C

I

OH

hydroquinone

H—

H—

H—

H—

C

//

%

H

resorcinol

OH

I

C

\ / C

C—

I

H

pyrocatechin

C—OH

C—OH

C—

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